Introduction: EFT, ERA and EPS Survey Results - Published June 2010

Questions and Comments from 'Somewhat Likely to Enroll' Providers

In previous articles, we have outlined the definitions, advantages and enrollment process for Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT), Electronic Remittance Advice (ERA) and Electronic Payment Summary (EPS). We also posted an interactive EFT, ERA and EPS Overview tutorial on our website. This tutorial included a survey to help us gauge provider understanding while offering viewers the opportunity to submit questions or comments.

After viewing the tutorial, 74 percent of respondents reported that they were Highly Likely to enroll for EFT, ERA/EPS, while 24 percent fell into the Somewhat Likely to enroll category. Many “Somewhat Likely” providers also included comments in response to the following survey question: Do you have any questions that haven’t been addressed and that may have prevented you from enrolling? Tell us how we can assist you! 

Here is a sampling of the basic EFT, ERA, EPS questions we received, along with our answers:

  1. Is there a fee for enrolling and/or using the EFT, ERA or EPS?

    Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) does not charge any fees related to EFT, ERA/EPS. However, if you utilize a billing service, vendor or clearinghouse, you should ask if they charge any fees for their services.

  2. Do I have to enroll in all three, or can I pick and choose?

    We highly encourage you to enroll for all of these transactions to help synchronize payment and reporting processes in your office. You can choose to enroll for EFT alone; or you may enroll for ERA/EPS, without EFT. You must enroll for ERA to receive the EPS.

  3. I don’t file claims electronically. Can I still enroll for EFT, ERA and EPS?

    Yes! While electronic claim submission is strongly encouraged, it is not a prerequisite to EFT, ERA/EPS enrollment.

  4. What's the difference between the ERA and EPS?

    The purpose of the ERA file is to eliminate the need for manual posting—it enables you to complete automatic posting of your patient accounts. The EPS replaces your paper Provider Claim Summary (PCS) with an electronic file that is easy to archive and retrieve.

 

Beyond the Basics…most provider questions received from the online survey were related to ERA/EPS. Therefore, we will be including an ERA/EPS-focused feature article in the next three issues of the Blue Review and posting additional ERA/EPS-focused articles on our Provider website over the next three months. The Electronic Options tutorial is available in the Electronic Commerce section of our website at bcbstx.com/provider, along with answers to frequently asked questions about EFT, ERA and EPS.

If you need further assistance with the enrollment process, contact our Electronic Commerce Center at (800) 746-4614. We look forward to helping you discover the benefits of participating in these electronic transactions.